DT boss calls for $67b in mobile network investment

Dylan Bushell-Embling
28 Apr 2010

German carriers must invest up to €50 billion ($66.6b) in the next decade to meet growing demand for mobile data applications, according to Deutsche Telekom chief Rene Obermann.

He told national newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung the investment was necessary as subscribers use more bandwidth-hungry applications, which he predicts will result in each user consuming 10-15GB per month, compared with a few megabytes at present.

“We are growing in a purely gigabyte society,” Obermann said. “This requires fast networks and high efficiency in the operation of such networks.”

The Deutsche Telekom CEO believes European telecoms regulation must be eased to give operators the freedom to upgrade their networks and charge accordingly for new services.

He said the EU’s focus on cutting prices in recent years “was the wrong way,” and urged national regulators to adopt a similar approach to Asia, where “there is a partnership between government and business,” which is more suited to modern industry.

Obermann said DT’s growth had dipped during 2009, but it had ridden out one of the worst financial crises of his working life well.

The carrier aims to grow top line mobile data revenues from €4 billion in 2009 to €10 billion by end-2015, as part of a five-year plan to double its sales unveiled last month.

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